By Sarah Lapidu and Tara Kavaler | Arizona Republic
Former Vice President Mike Pence addressed border security issues on Monday in Cochise County and in Phoenix.
Pence, a possible 2024 Republican presidential candidate, said he wanted to call national attention to issues at the Mexico border, calling the situation an “American crisis.” He said the Biden administration has not been doing enough to secure the border.
At a news conference on the Coronado National Memorial, overlooking a portion of unfinished border wall just south of Sierra Vista, Pence spoke to local law enforcement officials and longtime ranchers with land in the area. Later Monday, Pence delivered a border policy speech to about 100 people at the Arizona Commerce Authority in Phoenix.
“We have a crisis that is deeply troubling to millions of Americans. I’m here because I wanted to see firsthand what was happening on the ground,” Pence said at the news conference.
Pence called on the Biden administration and Democrats to increase efforts to secure the border.
“I want people to have hope, but it’s going to require that we elect men and women around the country who understand that border security is national security,” Pence said.
Pence claimed the Trump administration “succeeded in ending the border crisis” through policies and beginning construction of the border wall.
Mike Pence speaking to rancher John Ladd at the Coronado State Monument on June 13, 2022, in Cochise County.
Some of those policies he said included ending a practice through which certain immigrants are apprehended and released from Department of Homeland Security custody pending their immigration court proceedings
Title 42:Thousands of migrants are headed for the US in a caravan despite extension of border policy
The Trump administration enacted Title 42, a pandemic-era border health policy that allows U.S. authorities to stop the entry of migrants at the border, and the Migrant Protection Protocols, the controversial “Remain in Mexico” policy that allowed U.S. authorities to send asylum seekers to Mexico as they await the outcome of their proceedings.
“This is not an Arizona problem. This is an American problem,” Pence said about the situation at the border.